Japan's Koji arrives to take up new job as Nepal football team coach

KATHMANDU: Japanese national Gyotoku Koji, who has been appointed as Nepal's national team coach on the recommendation of the Japan Football Association's International Department, arrived here in the Capital, to take up his new job.

According to All Nepal Football Association (ANFA), Koji arrive on Friday and will be starting his duties right away.

His first duty will be to observe the ongoing Simara Gold Cup for a better understanding of football in the country, ANFA said.

A former Japan international with two CAPS under his belt, Koji holds a Japan Football Association (JFA) Official Class S License, which is equivalent to AFC Pro Diploma License, ANFA informed. Koji had played for Sportverein Werder Bremen in Europe from 1987 to 1989.

Koji served as the head coach of the Bhutan national team for a year in 2008-2009 during the Himalayan kingdom's SAFF Championship campaign. He had led Bhutan to the semi-finals of the SAFF Championship in 2008 held in Maldives and Sri Lanka. Bhutan, however, lost to India in the semifinals in the extra time, their biggest achievement in championship so far.

Koji's coaching career began from 1994 taking charge of Shimizu S Pulse U-18 team for two years. He later served as the head coach of the club in different age group team, especially the U-18 team till 2002.

Koji later handled Shimizu S Pulse in the J-League 1st Division as a coach and head coach from 2002-2004. His most recent involvement was with FC Ang Thong in Thai Division 1 in 2015.